UK time is: 11:36:26
Vital Login
Social Login

Choose your club

Other Sites

Network Navigation

Vital Partners

'If It's Football, It's Vital'

Saints And Sinners

Rather than this being your run of the mill match report, I want to look at yesterday's game and what it means in the long run i.e. where we need to strengthen the squad this month.

It was a much changed Blackpool team that travelled to League One promotion contenders Southampton; only Neal Eardley and Matt Phillips retained their places in the side from the midweek defeat to Birmingham, with the bench completely made up of youth team players.

Southampton enjoyed the better of the game, creating several chances before Lee Barnard and Guly Do Prado scored in the second half to secure a 2-0 victory for the hosts.

Paul Rachubka made his first appearance in an age after returning from injury. The keeper has been added to the Seasiders' 25 man Premier League squad and got a valuable 90 minutes under his belt yesterday afternoon.

Although he looked as sharp as ever reflexes-wise, he did (as per usual) flap at balls into the box and not come for balls he should have. With Matt Gilks out until around March with a knee injury, it's between Richard Kingson and Rabs for the number one jersey, and as admirably as Kingson has performed, he's looked constantly nervous as well. Perhaps if Gilks does leave the club this month as rumoured then there's an opportunity for Ollie to bring in a really commanding keeper?

In defence, Rob Edwards, Dekel Keinan and Alex Baptiste all got valuable run outs. Arguably the Seasiders have great strength in depth in the centre half positions, but undoubtedly need cover in the full back positions.

With David Carney at the Asia Cup with Australia, Stephen Crainey has no competition at left back whilst we only have Baps to provide Eardley with competition at right back. Arguably, if we could bring another right back in, it would allow us to offload Rob Edwards who very much has question marks hanging over him at Premier League level.

In midfield, Keith Southern and Ludovic Sylvestre got a valuable 90 minutes under their belts. Sylvestre has Charlie Adam's range of passing but plays like David Vaughan, and in my opinion is more than ample cover for boht of those players. With Southern, you get the sense that his injury in the summer has really set him back, but he certainly offers something very different to our other midfielders.

Matt Phillips completed 90 minutes on the flank and looked our most dangerous player throughout. I feel that yesterday will benefit him a lot in the long run as he looks to full make the step up from being an impact player to a regular starter. Undoubtedly though we could do with more options on the flanks with pace - after all, as Ollie says in The Independent today, some of our players are looking a little 'stale'.

Brett Ormerod and Jason Euell made returns to St. Mary's yesterday will Brett cheered and Euelly booed. Brett's not the player he was, but you always know that he'll give 110% and that could be invaluable in the run-in. He also has the knack of scoring key goals for us. Euell however is simply not up to standard. He did a job at times for us last season but looks like a fish out of water this season. Even if Ollie wants him as a coach in he long term, he needs to be given his marching orders in the short term.

The fact that Euell played the full 90 yesterday and the only striking option on the bench was Tom Barkhuizen shows that we also need to dip into the market for out and out strikers. Marlon Harewood is nearing full fitness, but arguably he's the only proper cover we have for DJ Campbell.

Ollie is known to want to strengthen his options in attack like this time last year; hence the bid for Plymouth's Bradley Wright-Phillips (who is on the verge of joining Reading for 300,000). Arguably though, the Seasiders could do with a forward with a bit of presence about him to convert the number of wonderful crosses the like of Eardley and Adam whip in.

Finally, it was great to see some of the youth team players get a run out yesterday. Let's hope that their debuts spur them on to work even harder on the training ground as gawd knows we need an upturn in our ability to turn youth players into full blown professionals.

Liverpool at home next (on Wednesday night); hopefully those first team players who got a rest yesterday will come out all guns blazing and show yesterday's lot how it's really done.




Use your social login to comment on front page articles. Login using you Facebook, Twitter, Google or LinkedIn accounts and have your say!



Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The journalist

Writer: Eamonn Moore  Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday January 9 2011

Time: 1:15PM

 

Have Your Say

Log in...
with your social network     OR     with your Vital account

Recent Articles

Blackpool team v Brighton (Monday April 21 2014)

Meet the Referee v Burnley (Thursday April 17 2014)

Leeds Review (Thursday April 17 2014)

Fans display their anger (Thursday April 10 2014)

Relegation Battle Looms (Monday April 7 2014)

Stats: Blackpool v Yeovil (Sunday April 6 2014)

All Square at Loftus Road (Wednesday April 2 2014)

Battling pool earn Priceless Point (Wednesday April 2 2014)

Archived Articles

List All Vital Blackpool Articles
Have your say
Click here to suggest an article
Click here to suggest a poll

Vital Members League (view all)

1. premier 1 324
2. SaskPool 224
3. SeasideEssexXile 190
4. Poole-Pool 177
5. Bear1951 160
6. Albert Ramsbottom 145
7. UAE Seasider 84
8. BobHatton 83
9. nodrogaty 60
10. 53CODGER 59

League Results (view all)

League Table (view table)

Team P W D L GD Pts
18. Charlton 43 11 12 20 -23 45
19. Doncaster 44 11 11 22 -28 44
20. Millwall 44 10 14 20 -29 44
21. Birmingham 43 11 10 22 -13 43
22. Blackpool 44 10 13 21 -27 43
23. Barnsley 44 9 12 23 -30 39
24. Yeovil 44 8 13 23 -26 37

Breaking League News

Tigers to offer Owls target new deal
Sheff Wed : 23/04/2014 10:47:00
Dyche on the Up!
Burnley : 23/04/2014 10:05:00
Adkins: Our destiny is in our hands
Reading : 23/04/2014 10:00:00
Francis: It's all to play for
Bournemouth : 23/04/2014 08:10:00
Howe: We have been frustrated
Bournemouth : 23/04/2014 08:02:00
Cook: My best goal to date
Bournemouth : 23/04/2014 07:57:00
LUFC On This Day - April 23rd
Leeds Utd : 23/04/2014 07:22:00

Current Site Poll (view all polls)

Do you agree with last nights protests?
Suggested By:  
Totally agree 63%
Other ways to show it 37%